Promotions and Abilities - 21.08.2020

New bonuses

I wanted to add another layer of depth to the game and allow players to have slightly different experiences on different play throughs. I don't think I've magically added endless mountains of depth to the game but, since the average game played (is actually around 8 minutes, but I think that includes all the people who don't really give it a go) is at least an hour I figured that it might be brilliant to give people a little bit more to explore. So, ranks and XP have arrived to the game.

So now when you take pieces the piece that did the taking gets a little bit of XP, and pretty soon the piece will be upgraded. There are three levels to get to.

Bronze, Silver, and Gold.

Maybe one day I'll add diamond or something for even more abilities and things to get. We'll see how this plays out first. I have plans to perhaps give each piece a unique ability at gold level - perhaps castles could support walls between them if you had two gold ones? Or maybe four gold queens in a square could generate XP to any piece placed between them? Maybe quads of gold bishops could serve as portals - who knows.
It's difficult to decide exactly what will break the game and what will actually improve it. I think the recent additions will be an improvement.

Really, this update marks a bit of a departure from the fantasy of success I had. An IO game is supposed to be so many things that megachess is not, but I've come to terms with that. I think the game is more difficult now compared to the last update - but if people are sticking around for a challenging game then perhaps that is best. Maybe the bounce rate will go up, but if the folks that stay are having more fun, then I suppose its worth it.

I'll never cover costs with ad revenue - to date I think I have covered a little over 1% of the server costs. But, if the game remains this small I think - provide my finances don't get too disrupted with Covid, I should be able to pay to keep the game alive so long as someone is playing it. Frankly, it gets a bit cheaper when fewer people play, but its not nearly so much fun.

So, the new version is up and alive now. Probably full of bugs. But, hey I think its polished enough to call it version 1.0.0

Once again, thanks very much for taking a look at my little project and playing it and joining the discord and all that good stuff.

Ghosts and Rewards - 21.08.2020

New bonuses

In the next couple of days I'll be pushing the new updates to the site. Right now its accessable through the alternate gameserver if you want to take a look. It might be up, it might be down. If you're reading this a few weeks from now it'll either be down or I'll be workign on something new there.

The pic above is of a player dominating the board, essentially winning the game. Which is great. It was a lot of fun to watch - and the concept of farming the bots isn't something that occured to me. As always, I am eternally grateful that someone played the game I made to this extent. But, this level of domination is the result of my poor game design - its a mutiplayer and its not supposed to be possible in a perpetual world to be able to do this.

I had hoped that there would be a large number of human players and this sort of thing would be naturally impossible. but, alas, its not as popular as I'd hoped. (Not yet) So my only choice is to impose a substantial nerf on the players.

New bonuses

But all is not lost. I have other offerings.

Pictured above is the new look of the game. I've switched up the black and white bases and coloured pieces for black and white pieces and coloured bases. Hopefully this makes it a lot clearer that it is a team game - the classic chess teams.

Pictured above also are the new bonus pieces. They will be collectable pieces. Try to take one and you will be awarded that piece - and you get awarded the rank score as if you'd taken them too.

This choice has been made to further address the wild imbalance of the game. Since before it was only possible to gain pieces via taking players kings any situation where one playve was dominant enough lead to the situation where it was hopless to even try. These noew bonus pieces will help palyers in the early game by giving them access to powerful new pieces. In combination with the kingdom mechanic (by jove, thats what I should call it) I hope this will lead to, quite simply, people having more fun.

Lastly, for your viewing pleasure. The stats page has been launched. So you can peruse that to take a look at the competition or see if you've made the leaderboard.

Thanks again.

If you're stuck, or looking for more info or are perhaps interested in the development of the game there is a community on the discord. We'd love to meet you.

The great nerfening - 10.08.2020

New bonuses

I feel it has to be done.

I've spent a lot of time playing other IO games of late and I've tried to list and distil the core gameplay mechanics that make them so much fun to play. quite frankly, I feel has fallen short on a few key points...

There is, however, a way to address one glaring balance issue, and that is to nerf the players slightly, and to give new starting players an early game advantage.

The plan is to introduce a mechanic that gives the Kings a sphere of influence over their armies. Basically this simulates the hard fact that the larger and empire the harder it is to control. Pieces beyond a threshold will start to fade away - as if they've grown tired of their distant ruler and will defect.

At the same time I'm in the process of adding ghost piece bonuses to the game. You'll be able to take them and will be awarded an extra piece, and the score of having taken a piece of that rank. There is a slim - note, SLIM - chance I'll put in the occasional new king - though this might break the server and also undermine the point of the nerf.

The end result of this should be that large players no longer become completely impossible to defeat, and early game players have a way to grow without having to engage with overwhelming odds.

We are a community of 10 - 09.08.2020

Well, thats nice.

Truly, I didn't really expect much of a response to this game after launching. So I am very grateful to all those who have paid attention, given feedback, or even just played the game.

In response I have decided to continue development beyond what I had originally planned. The original plan was to make as a toy, which I believe would have been very very popular in 2006 or something, as a vehicle to learn all about servers and html5 games. Then continue with developments on a variety of projects till I got stinking rich off of something.

But, here you are, and here I am. People are playing it so I think it's right to try and improve it. Okay, other projects will be slowed down but they are non-entities, which nobody cares about. If I take my time and do it right, I'll probably be able to transfer to a new server system and make It has a few more features. But that's all for another day.

Thanks for playing.

New features in the works - 06.08.2020

What a base!
Keep your king safe!

As the game evolves it's become quite clear that I need to let the vision of what I want the game to be evolve with it. That's what good developers do, and I'd like to be a good game dev one day.

So, since the game is taking a bit of a base building turn I've decided to develop some tools to help manage all those pieces. I've been playing along with other people and on my own and there seems to be a trend of players making larger and larger defensive positions. I'd originally expected this to be quite rare behaviour but the higher numbers of players that the game was designed around having haven't appeared so people have been having fun in other ways.

And, who am I to say that you have to have fun my way?

So, there are two main things in the works right now.

Change Log

  • 0.26 | 8.08.2020:

    • Fixed pawns able to take orthogonally before they've made their special move

    • Removed debug details window

  • 0.25 | 4.08.2020:

    • Added Chat features

    • Added Nameplates

    • Added Tougher bots.

  • 0.24 | 2.08.2020:

    • Fixed zoom issue

  • 0.23 | 30.07.2020:

    • Fixed score not resetting on abandoned pieces.

    • Increased starting area border to give new players more space.

    • Fixed score not appearing till the end of first turn.

    • Fixed sticky pieces on abandon.

  • 0.22 | 12.07.2020:

    • Fixed Server issue.

  • 0.21 | 12.07.2020:

    • Added touch screen controls.

    • Added animated scoreboard

    • Updated Pawn movement to make it omnidirectional - moving pawns around is a complete chore, so giving them extra movement helps speed things up

  • 0.20 | 08.07.2020:

    • Added touch screen controls.

    • Added animated scoreboard

    • Updated Pawn movement to make it omnidirectional - moving pawns around is a complete chore, so giving them extra movement helps speed things up

  • 0.19 | 04.07.2020:

    • Fixed gameplay issues: gizmos not giving proper information

    • Graphics Tweaks

  • 0.18 | 02.07.2020:

    • Added: coloured pieces to identify foes

    • Redid all the Graphics.

    • Fixed Bishop Special Move

    • Added: Players are now remembered when they leave for 60 seconds - now you can refresh if there is a bug or something without losing your pieces

    • Added: New Board Tiles

    • Added: New Player Sprites

    • Optimized everything

    • Removed old display system, added webgl renderer

    • Removed: Piece indicator now turns grey to indicate that a piece has already moved during turn.

    • Added: Piece indicator now turns grey to indicate that a piece has already moved during turn.

    • Fixed: Pawn opening move now works.

  • 0.17 | 19.06.2020:

    • Migrated to proper domain. is alive

  • 0.16 | 19.06.2020:

    • Added positional awareness to piece placement.

    • Fixed: Resize Canvas Bug

    • Changed Rule: Players now get 1 additional move for every 4 pieces over 16

  • 0.15 | 17.06.2020:

    • Cookie compliance and Google Analytics added.

  • 0.14 | 15.06.2020:

    • Firefox support added.

  • 0.13 | 14.06.2020:

    • FIXED: Server instability

  • 0.12 | 14.06.2020:

    • Polished controls, now you can deselect selected piece by clicking on it

    • ADDED: Score system

  • 0.11 | 12.06.2020:

    • ADDED: Animation and sound on pice capture

  • 0.10 | 11.06.2020:

    • CHANGED: Control scheme, now everything is on left click instead of move on right.

  • 0.9 | 10.06.2020:

    • ADDED: ticking sound near end of turn.

    • Made the back end more efficient, separated out board and objects to separate layers for unlimited animation possibilities

  • 0.8 | 08.06.2020:

    • FIXED: various server problems, pieces not exchanging.

    • FIXED: new client pieces not tracked by arrows

    • ADDED: Animation and sound on piece moves.

    • ADDED: Added gizmos to highlight last move taken

    • REMOVED: Animated glow, incompatible with efficiency measures

  • 0.7 | 07.06.2020:

    • Changed rules: when a player takes an opponent's king, they are rewarded with all their pieces, and no moves are consumed other than from the piece making the capture: intent to increase the reward for defeating players and speeding up gameplay

    • Fixed: Display bug on moves gizmo at beginning of game.

  • 0.6 | 02.06.2020:

    • Added server side game control, allowing for multiple game types.

  • 0.5 | 02.06.2020:

    • First version worth mentioning. MMO chess is alive!

    • Removed many bugs.

    • Added in many more.